Thursday, April 24, 2014

The Maury Wills 1961 Union Oil Dodger Family Booklet

Here is my last post featuring the 1961 Union Oil Dodger Family Booklet set.  Go here to see my past post showcasing this set; including complete scans of both the Vin Scully/Jerry Doggett and Sandy Koufax booklets.  This time I share the Maury Wills Booklet.

As I said, this is the very last booklet in the 1961 Union Oil set that I am sharing.  Since I started this series in early February I've scanned all 24 booklets in the set (that's 216 total pages scanned), and you can check them all out here.  My favorite of the bunch was Dick Farrell booklet since I had a chance to learn about a Dodger player I had no knowledge of.  A close second was the Vin Scully/Jerry Doggett booklet.

Besides the player biographies, I really enjoyed the little snippets of information found in individual boxes throughout the booklets.  There was always something new to find out about a player; as well as, interesting quotes.  For instance, here are some snippets from the Maury Wills booklet.
  • Wills said, early in June last year, "I'm still learning on the left side.  This is only my second year of switching, and I'm not a natural hitter to begin with.  I'm a natural pitcher and runner, but I had to learn hitting.  I'm bound to get better."
  • Let all who feel rejected at one time or another in their lives take heart.  Wills was sold conditionally to Detroit in 1958 for $35,000.  The Tigers sent him back.  Now look at him.
  • Manager Walt Alston, when he feels extra approbation for Maury's good deeds, calls Will "Little Man."  He once said to his shortstop, "You get such a beautiful jump, little man.  Why don't you steal first base a few times?"
Below are complete scans of every page from Maury Wills' 1961 Union Oil Dodger Family Booklet.  Click any pic to embiggen. 









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Blog Kiosk: 4/24/2014 - Dodger Links - Kershaw to Pitch Tomorrow in Rancho Cucamonga


Clayton Kershaw was hanging out with Jordan Farmar and Nick Young of the Lakers yesterday.  Pic above via Jon SooHoo/LA Dodgers 2014.
He felt the pitch was a good change of pace because it was a slow curve — it averages just over 70 mph these days — and it caused the batter to be out in front of the pitch. But he wasn’t sure if that was why curves turn into grounders. “The number one thing for curves and grounders — they are low in the zone,” said Greinke of the pairing. 
"He'll be making more than one, for sure," Mattingly said, an indication that Kershaw likely would make another Minor League start next Wednesday before possibly rejoining the Dodgers in Washington on May 5.
  • Via Mark Saxon at ESPNLosAngeles.com, "Fielding an issue, but will it matter?"
As this first month of Dodgers baseball has played out -- remember, the season started way back on March 22, way over in Australia -- you can sometimes find yourself wondering whether this team is so good in two phases of the game as to make the third practically irrelevant. You can also find yourself wondering whether the third, at some critical point, might undo all the good the first two compiled. 
But lost in all of the pomp and circumstance on Wednesday night was another 2 for 4 performance which, for the most part, went completely unnoticed – the 2 for 4 night of Dodgers center fielder Matt Kemp.

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    Wednesday, April 23, 2014

    Weekend Autograph Opportunities: Paul LoDuca, Dee Gordon and a Brian Wilson Bobblehead in RC

    Here are this weekends autograph opportunities and events throughout the Southland. As always, be sure to check the Blue Heaven Calendar for other events (a link can always be found on the tab at the top of this page, just left of center), and always confirm with the establishment. Everything is subject to change.  Please email me with any tips about upcoming events in Southern California.  As the rest of the week progresses I'll update this post with other events (if there are any) as I become aware of them.  Also, I don't always list every event below, so be sure to check my Calendar.  I always try to favor free signing events over paying events.  Click on any pic to embiggen.

    ---------------------------

    I was going to let you know about the Brian Wilson bobbleBEARD game in Rancho Cucamonga on Friday, but it's too late.  The game is already sold out.  Only 1,500 fans will get one, so if you have tickets you'd better get there early.

    ---------------------------

    Former Dodger catcher Paul LoDuca will be signing autographs on Saturday.  Go here for information.
    Alex C. Liu OD
    19735 E. Colima Rd.
    Rowland Heights, CA 91748
    ---------------------------

    Dee Gordon will be in Whittier on Saturday to sign for fans.  Go here for information.
    Harry's Dugout
    10715 Beverly Boulevard
    Whittier, CA

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    Blog Kiosk: 4/23/2014 - Dodger Links - We Do Deserve an Apology


    Clayton Kershaw did some heavy lifting yesterday at the Dream Center.  Pic above via Jon SooHoo/LA Dodgers 2014Ken Gurnick at MLB.com tells us a bit about it here.
    • Via Howard Cole at LA Weekly, "Time Warner Owes Us an Apology. And So Do the Dodgers."  I've been agnostic about this whole situation, but am finding myself more disturbed about it.  Howard is right, at some point, if this ever gets worked out, they (and I mean all of them-Dodgers-TWC-Comcast-DISH-etc.-All of Them) owe fans an apology.  A quote from Howard's piece is below:
    Love does not mean never having to say you're sorry. In fact, an apology of some sort is definitely indicated when the tear-jerker of a love story we're talking about is Dodger baseball - - and the Southland's inability to cherish what is nearly as precious to many of us as a family member.
    "The plays that you're supposed to make, you've got to make," he said. "Simple as that."
    • Chad Moriyama at Dodgers Digest writes a, "Down On The Farm Update: Games Of 4/15 – 4/21."
    • Jon Weisman at Dodger Insider tells us about Adult Baseball Camp in November at Historic Dodgertown in Vero Beach.
    • Jon also shares a video of Clayton Kershaw's most recent bullpen throwing session, here.  He is throwing to Don Mattingly.
    • Via Eric Stephen at True Blue LA, "Chad Billingsley to receive PRP injection Wednesday."
    • Via Ken Gurnick at MLB.com, "Guerrero's Triple-A tear creates buzz."
    • Dustin Nosler at Dodgers Digest shares a prospect report, "Jonathan Martinez off to strong start in Great Lakes."
    • Ken Levine, formerly of Dodger Talk, sums up my feelings about Linkedin precisely. Heck, I kinda feel that way about all the social networks.  I am constantly surprised at how folks take any of it seriously, yet I understand and appreciate the importance that the self-promotion provides.  A comment I read on Ken's post really rings true:
    LinkedIn is like a bunch of people at a marketing/networking conference seminar at a crappy hotel: Everyone spends their time standing around touching all the donuts in the back, not really knowing anyone, and trying not to seem out of touch or awkward. Nobody knows how to really use the damn thing, why they're even there, or why it even matters beyond "I got sent here because the boss thinks this is important somehow ... but I get a free day out of the office, so I'm kinda all good".

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    Tuesday, April 22, 2014

    Go Kings Go!


    Tonight is Game 3, and I am both nervous and excited.  We've had a tough go of it the first two games, and at numerous times in those early matches the Kings looked unrecognizable.

    Who were those guys?

    The Kings had seemingly lost their way.  They aimlessly tried to catch up with the Sharks speed, but ended up chasing the puck to their demise.  Kings hockey had disappeared, and if they want to have any chance of winning this series they had better find it again. 

    Coming back home to the Staples Center is a good place to restart things.  They'll have a friendly crowd ready and willing to cheer them to victory.  I suspect it'll be loud, but I fear that some early nervous tension will set in if the Kings do not set their pace. 

    I, for one, plan on being loud throughout.  I'll be sitting in my usual section with my friends in tow.  We'll scream and chant, cheer and bellow, yell and shriek. 

    We might be down for now, but the count has not even begun.  We are standing in our corner ready for the referee to restart the fight, and like Ali in Manila we will shake off our misery with a tough win in the end. 

    The bout starts at 7:00 PM, and you had better glue your eyes to the tube for this one.  This evening may prove to be the bellwether. 

    Go Kings Go!

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    Blog Kiosk: 4/22/2014 - Dodger Links - Arruebarrena Plays, More Dodger Give-Away Previews and Greinke


    This is a great photo of an unfortunate play.  Carlos Ruiz tags out Yasiel Puig between 3rd and home in the 1st inning.  It set a tone for the rest of the game as they would not get another runner to 3rd base.  Pic via Jon SooHoo/LA Dodgers 2014.
    • Via Dustin Nosler at Dodgers Digest, "Dodgers’ SS prospect Erisbel Arruebarrena makes professional debut."
    • Here's a peek at the Dodger pennant being given away at Dodger Stadium on Saturday, May 10th against the Giants.  See it on the right.   It has a old-timey kind of look to it.  
    • On Tuesday, June 17th the Dodgers are giving away a facsimile autographed Dodger Baseball.  See it on the left, below.  Awesome, right?
    • Jon Weisman at Dodger Insider explores, "The crazy rise in strikeouts for the Dodgers."
    Dodger pitchers have never struck out more than 1,292 batters in a season, a record set in 2013. This year, they’re on pace for 1,543. And Clayton Kershaw hasn’t pitched in a game since March.
    In the novel, the reclusive writer was the real-life J.D. Salinger. Why was he not a character in the movie? The answer involves both moxie and cowardice.
    • Jon Chapper at Dodger Insider tells us that the Dodgers are nearing 10,000 total franchise National League wins, and we are either 3 or 16 wins away from it - depending on who you ask.
    • Greg Katz at the LAist shares some delectable photos of some of the new foods being offered at Dodger Stadium.  Yummmmm...
    • Eno Harris at FoxSports notes that Greinke has always played around with his pitching repertoire in order to stay ahead of hitter.
    • Via Ken Gurnick at MLB.com, "Dodgers name training room after Dr. Jobe."
    • ICYMI:  The Dodgers recalled right-handed pitcher Jose Dominguez from Triple-A yesterday and optioned infielder/outfielder Chone Figgins to Albuquerque.  This is expected to be a short term move, so as to help out an overworked bullpen.

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    Monday, April 21, 2014

    A Ryu Bobblehead Preview - Some Dodgers Had Some Fun With It


    Earlier this afternoon, a yet-to-be unveiled Dodger bobblehead made an appearance in the Dodger dugout.  It appears the Dodgers PR staff was preparing some promotional photos and videos that included Puig having some fun with the ceramic doll.  Better yet, others got into the act.

    BTW, Ryu's bobblehead will be given out to fans on Tuesday, May 27th in a game against the Reds.

    At the very top is a close up of Hyun-Jin Ryu's bobblehead, pic via Beto Duran on twitter.  Then, Puig shows it off.


    He can fly!  Pic via @Dodgers on twitter.


    Then, Juan Uribe got a hold of the Ryu bobblehead and took it with him to infield practice (pic via Beto Duran on twitter).


    Puig's bobblehead suddenly made an appearance, so Uribe responded with some violence (via @Dodgers on twitter)


    Here's a close up view, via Beto Duran on twitter.


    I think Juan Uribe is a bit jealous that he isn't getting one.  Puig, in turn had some unkind words, via Bill Plunkett on twitter.


    The hijinks never ends in the Dodger clubhouse.  Who said this team can't gel - that the melting pot that is the Dodgers is incompatible with chemistry?  From the look of it, this Dodger team has plenty of chemistry.

    UPDATE:  Check out the boys with their bobbles, via a tweet from the Ryu.



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    The Stan Williams 1961 Union Oil Dodger Family Booklet

    Here is another post featuring the 1961 Union Oil Dodger Family Booklet set.  Go here to see my past post showcasing this set; including complete scans of both the Vin Scully/Jerry Doggett and Sandy Koufax booklets.  This time I share the Stan Williams Booklet.

    "Big Daddy" as he was also known stood 6' 5" tall and had a blazing fastball.   Unfortunately, he was unable to harness his skills to be a top of the rotation guy.  Never mind though, with a pitching staff as good as the Dodgers back then he played an important role by averaging 25 starts a year in Blue. Overall, Williams recorded 57 win against 46 losses in 5 years. 

    So, what did he consider to be his key to success?  Well, the booklet provides some insight.
    Stan Williams calls the three most important assets he's acquired the "three C's" - confidence, concentration, control.  Without the first two, he believes, control is impossible to any pitcher.  "My concentration," he says, in all modesty, "is so keen now that I never see the crowd.  I couldn't tell you if 100 or 100,000 are in the park.  All I see id the diamond."
    Below are complete scans of every page from Stan William's 1961 Union Oil Dodger Family Booklet.  Click any pic to embiggen. 









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    Blog Kiosk: 4/21/2014 - Dodger Links - Puiggy, Kershaw Getting Close and the Continued Saga of Uribe's Fantastic Outfits


    Just Puig being Puig.  What a play by Puig on Miguel Montero's drive down the line.  Watch it hereGif via Dodger Dugout.
    "This was full effort for me," he said. "You can't simulate the adrenaline of a big league game. But as far as [a] 10 a.m. sim game, that's all I got."
    "I'm trying to do what I did in the second half of last year, to focus on location and not focus on how hard I'm throwing. Really I'm just trying to focus on keeping the ball down," Haren said. "This year I've gotten a lot more ground balls. I don't know what I can attest that to, other than focusing on keeping the ball at the knees or below. I've tended to be a fly ball pitcher over my career, but this year I've gotten a few more ground balls."
    "You're seeing him adapt to who he is right now," manager Don Mattingly said. "He's putting doubt in hitters' minds. It's two [good starts] in a row, so hopefully he's just building. 


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    Sunday, April 20, 2014

    The Next Homestand Against Phillies - Scheduled Autograph Signings!

    The next homestand starts tomorrow with the Phillies, and several old-time Dodgers will be in the house to sign free autographs for fans.  Below are the scheduled autograph opportunities and other odds and ends for this upcoming homestand.

    BTW, the Extreme Loaded Dog concession stands will be making the Philly Dog, a Super Dodger Dog combined with Philly cheese steak meat, caramelized onions and melted cheese.  Mmmm...  Check out a pic on the right.

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    Monday April 21
    LHP Cliff Lee vs. LHP Paul Maholm

    Monday's game starts at 7:10 PM.  Auto gates open at 4:30 PM, and stadium gates open at 5:00 PM.  2014 Sochi Olympics luger and La Cañada native Kate Hansen will throw the ceremonial first pitch and officially start the game with “It’s Time for Dodger Baseball!”  Meredith, Chris and Cam Jobe, sons of the late pioneering medical surgeon Dr. Frank Jobe, will throw an honorary first pitch. The national anthem will be performed by David Larsen, who portrays Elder Price in the TONY Award winning musical “The Book of Mormon.”  Also, 34 actors from “The Book of Mormon” will lead the crowd in singing “Take Me Out to the Ballgame” during the 7th inning stretch.

    Former Dodgers Matt Luke (in right-field pavilion plaza) and Mickey Hatcher (in left-field pavilion plaza) will be signing autographs for fans from 5:00 PM to 7:10 PM. 

    From a press release:
    The Veteran of the Game presented by Bank of America is U.S. Army Specialist Cheyne Gomez of Hacienda Heights. Gomez enlisted in 2008 to follow in the footsteps of his grandfather and is assigned to the 1908th Medical Detachment and was deployed to Iraq in 2009. Gomez’s accolades include the Iraq Campaign Medal with Campaign Star and the Global War on Terrorism Service Medal. 
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    Tuesday, April 22
    RHP A.J. Burnett vs. LHP Hyun-Jin Ryu

    Tuesday's game starts at 7:10 PM.  Auto gates open at 4:30 PM, and stadium gates open at 5:00 PM. The first 40,000 fans through the gates will receive a Dodger blanket.  See a pic on the left.  The national anthem will be performed by Los Angeles native Elliot Yamin of “American Idol” fame.

    Former Dodgers Tim Leary (in right-field pavilion plaza) and Lee Lacy (in left-field pavilion plaza) will be signing autographs for fans from 5:00 PM to 7:10 PM. 

    From a press release:
    The Veteran of the Game presented by Bank of America is U.S. Army Specialist Candy Gamboa of Los Angeles. Gamboa enlisted in 2011 inspired by September 11 and serves with the HHC 508th Military Police Battalion. Gamboa is currently on a mid-deployment break from her assignment in Afghanistan. Her accolades include two Army Achievement Medals. 
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    Wednesday, April 23
    LHP Cole Hamels vs. RHP Zack Greinke

    Wednesday's game starts at 7:10 PM.  Auto gates open at 4:30 PM, and stadium gates open at 5:00 PM. USC alumnus and Laker Nick Young and UCLA alumnus and Laker Jordan Farmar will throw the ceremonial first pitch and officially start the game with “It’s Time for Dodger Baseball!” Country recording artist Eric Paslay will perform the national anthem.

    Former Dodgers Kenny Landreaux (in right-field pavilion plaza) and Ken McMullen (in left-field pavilion plaza) will be signing autographs for fans from 5:00 PM to 7:10 PM. 

    From a press release:
    The Veteran of the Game presented by Bank of America is U.S. Marine Corps Corporal Francisco Demara, Jr. of Victorville. Demara enlisted in 2010 and is assigned to the 3rd Battalion, 7th Marines at Marine Corps Air Ground Combat Center in Twentynine Palms. Demara has served two combat tours to Helmand Province in Afghanistan, proudly displaying a Dodger banner on both deployments. His accolades include the Afghanistan Campaign Medal, Navy Commendation Medal and the NATO Defense Medal.  
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    Thursday, April 24
    RHP Kyle Kendrick vs. RHP Dan Haren

    Thursday's game starts at 7:10 PM.  Auto gates open at 4:30 PM, and stadium gates open at 5:00 PM.  This is Clayton Kershaw Bobblehead Night.  The first 50,000 fans in attendance will receive one.  Check out what it looks like on the right.  Max Greenfield, star of “New Girl,” will throw the ceremonial first pitch.  The Los Angeles Dodgers Foundation (LADF) will hold a silent auction on the Club level by the Vin Scully Press Box.

    Former Dodgers Billy Ashley (in right-field pavilion plaza) and Al Ferrara (in left-field pavilion plaza) will be signing autographs for fans from 5:00 PM to 7:10 PM. 

    From a press release:
    The Veteran of the Game presented by Bank of America is U.S. Marine Corps Captain Vic Sanceda of La Puente. Sanceda enlisted in 2005 and is responsible for source staffing requirements for units deploying overseas and is the Officer In Charge of personnel affairs for Division field exercises. His accolades include a Combat Action Ribbon and Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medals.

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